Washington, D.C. – Nevada Senator Harry Reid commented today after the head of the Yucca Mountain Project, Ward Sproat, testified before the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Energy and Water.
Sproat said the Department of Energy (DOE) needs more than $1 billion next year to stay on schedule, but the agency is only requesting half that amount to keep the Yucca Mountain project limping along. As the project was wounded by budget cuts engineered by Senator Reid of more than $100 million last year, it is clear the DOE will not receive anywhere near what the department is requesting.
“I’m not surprised that the Energy Department said today it wants more money,” said Reid. “American taxpayers have already spent too much money on a dangerous project that has already proven to be too costly and too controversial. There is no way we’re going to ship 77,000 tons of nuclear waste across the country. The dump will never be built, and the Energy Department knows it.”
Senator Pete Domenici (R-NM), the lead Republican on the subcommittee, also told DOE that Yucca is a flawed policy and should be replaced.
Despite bipartisan opposition to the dump, the DOE seems intent on wasting millions more hard-earned taxpayer dollars to try to file a license application to build Yucca, knowing that the dump faces too many obstacles to ever become a reality.